Showing posts from January 11, 2017

Today's Trumpery


Best Buy National Repair Techs Routinely Search Customer Devices, Act as “Paid Informers” for FBI

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Gaius Publius, posted on Naked Capitalism by Yves Smith10 January 2017

Yves here. There is an additional layer to this ugly picture. I have whistleblowers as contacts, and one is particularly technology savvy. He has long been above-board in how he conducts his personal and business affairs. His big worry has been that it is not hard to plant information on devices.

By Gaius Publius, a professional writer living on the West Coast of the United States and frequent contributor to DownWithTyranny, digby, Truthout, and Naked Capitalism. Follow him on Twitter @Gaius_Publius, Tumblr and Facebook. GP article archive here. Originally published at DownWithTyranny

Florida restaurant wants employees to pay out of pocket for doing a bad job

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[On the crapification of labour, Part Two. *RON*]

by Nick Wills, Orlando Weekly, 9 January 2017
During a recent employee meeting, Saigon Bistro, located in Lakeland, Florida, reportedly asked its employees to sign a contract saying they would pay real money for not doing their jobs up to par.

Bring on the Bots

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[On the crapification of labour, Part One. *RON*]

Penny Crosman, American Banker, 8 January 2017

Artificial intelligence is moving from science fiction to practical reality fast.

AI — technology that teaches machines to learn so they can perform cognitive tasks and interact with people — is suddenly accessible to many companies. Costs associated with the advanced computing and data-storage hardware behind AI are plummeting. A growing number of vendors also offer AI tools such as robotic processing automation that can be configured without the help of a rocket scientist.

So this is clearly an area more banks will need to pay attention to going forward.

Of productivity in France and in Germany

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[On the central importance of education to economic productivity. So, you might also want to look at the New York Times' Big Worries About Betsy DeVos: who "faces a big challenge in explaining the damage she’s done to public education in her home state, Michigan. She has poured money into charter schools advocacy, winning legislative changes that have reduced oversight and accountability. About 80 percent of the charter schools in Michigan are operated by for-profit companies, far higher than anywhere else. She has also argued for shutting down Detroit public schools, with the system turned over to charters or taxpayer money given out as vouchers for private schools." *RON*]
Thomas Piketty, Le Blog de Thomas Piketty, 09 janvier 2017

At the start of 2017, with the elections in France in the Spring and then in Germany in the Autumn, it may prove useful to return to one of the fundamental issues which plagues discussion at European lev…

Repealing the ACA without a Replacement — The Risks to American Health Care

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[In addition to this article, and his farewell speech in Chicago yesterday (he gives great speech), Obama also published this piece in Science on The Irreversible Momentum of Clean Energy, and this one in the Harvard Law Review on The President's Role in Advancing Criminal Justice Reform. I guess the point is that he's never lacked awareness of the direction things should be heading in, even if he proved notably incapable of moving any of these marvelous ideas forward. *RON*]

Barack H. Obama, New England Journal of Medicine, 6 January 2017

Health care policy often shifts when the country’s leadership changes. That was true when I took office, and it will likely be true with President-elect Donald Trump. I am proud that my administration’s work, through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and other policies, helped millions more Americans know the security of health care in a system that is more effective and efficient. At the same time, there…